Dignity and Privacy Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Did the Duty That Lay Nearest Her

By Ellen Goodman Copyright The Boston Globe Newspaper Co. | St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO), May 22, 1994 | Go to article overview

Dignity and Privacy Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Did the Duty That Lay Nearest Her


Ellen Goodman Copyright The Boston Globe Newspaper Co., St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)


She went home to die. There would be no strangers coming down her hospital corridor, whispering outside her door. No paparazzi angling to get at her bedside.

The spokesman for the hospital had said, as spokesmen have said so many times before, "Mrs. Onassis and her family have asked that her privacy be respected at this time."

The reporters, the curious, the well-wishers were kept at arm's length for one last time.

Jacqueline Bouvier. Jacqueline Kennedy. Jackie O. It was a malignant cancer indeed that killed this most private of public women at 64 years old.

The woman's image was seared into our national photo album half her lifetime ago. She was 34 years old - only 34 - on that day when she flew back from Dallas, still dressed in a pink suit stained with the blood of her husband.

In the days that followed, Jacqueline Kennedy become the icon of national mourning. She set a standard for the stoicism we call dignity in the face of death. She did this as she did everything - with courage, in public, under a veil.

Jacqueline Bouvier. The daughter of Black Jack. The 18-year-old who was chosen the Debutante of 1947. The diffident Vassar and George Washington student who became the "inquiring camera girl" for the old Washington Times Herald. The wife of the young senator from Massachusetts. The first lady.

At times, she looked like a deer caught in the Kennedy headlights. She hadn't voted before her marriage, didn't care much for politics, was more attracted to art than policy, and liked shopping more than touch football.

We thought we knew her. We thought she belonged to us. She has been on more magazine covers than Madonna. We followed every move, every hairstyle and lifestyle change. We knew her favorite diet dinner - baked potatoes with caviar - and her favorite designers.

But it was a compliment that she didn't return, an intrusion she lived with but didn't welcome.

As a single mother, the most famous widow with the most famous children in America, she chose to raise Caroline and John as well and as far from the spotlight as possible.

"I was reading (essayist Thomas) Carlyle," she said once after Jack died, "and he said you should do the duty that lies nearest you. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Dignity and Privacy Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Did the Duty That Lay Nearest Her
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.